Get ready for the Scottish gold rush

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Rachael Taylor on why the gold in them there hills is perfectly timed.

After a rather heavy weekend – of news, not booze – a couple of weeks ago that left my head reeling from Norwegian extremists, dead rock stars, train crashes and starving babies, I was ready for some good news.

And there, on the tiny crammed screen of my smart phone, popped up the little cheery nugget I had been hoping for. Well, in fact, I hadn’t hoped for it, because I had no idea it existed.

The news I’m talking about is that Scotland could be about to open its first commercial gold mine.

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For those of you who don’t know me, I’ll put my hands up now and admit to being a Scot, so yes, I might be a little biased. However, my interest in Scotland’s potentially untapped riches is as a British product (and may I be so bold as to suggest an export too?).

Forget the £80m boost to the economy, the raft of new jobs, the ethical angle; what has really tickled me is how nice it would be to have a British metal to write about. It has been great to write about Welsh gold, particularly in recent times thanks to the royal wedding connection, but those supplies are running very thin indeed (Clogau Gold suggests there is just six years left of supply), so to have a new contender to keep the British precious metals flag flying is a very exciting prospect indeed.

And the best part is that nobody is complaining. Retailers seem receptive, the ethical contingent are on board and the locals seem thrilled. Although the mine has been in the pipeline for 15 years, as it moves closer it brings with it a whiff of excitement reminiscent of a Wild West gold rush.

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